These are hard times for publishers. People seem to read less and less, which of course impacts on the sales of newspapers and magazines. If you’re a publisher, surely you’ve asked yourself at least once: what could I do to improve business and increase revenues?
However difficult this period may be for the publishing industry, you don’t need to worry, provided you follow these five simple rules on how to increase the readers of your magazine.
Have you ever thought that if you’re facing a crisis with your business, it may be down to the quality that you offer?
It doesn’t matter which industry you’re in; from food to finance, from hospitality to publishing, every successful business is based on the product or service. For a magazine, content is crucial to catch readers’ attention and keep them buying the issues as they are released.
The importance of writing content that is interesting and helpful to the audience cannot be underestimated. And if you really want to reach the hearts of your readers, the first step is understanding clearly who your target is.
Creating some buyer personas can be very useful. Buyer personas are fictional representations of your ideal customer. They are given a name, an age, a job and some interests. Once you have prepared a buyer persona, you should start planning the content accordingly.
With this method, meeting the needs of the readers will be easier for you. Considering your client as a real human being with feelings and problems is important to become a point of reference for them.
Now that you know what you should write in your magazine, the question is how to reach the audience? Maybe you already have a paper magazine - how is it doing? Even if you think you’re selling well with your printed issues, consider going digital.
Thanks to the web, you can really respond to the needs of your readers, who want quick delivery services, lower prices and the chance to read your magazine everywhere. Digital magazines offer all these advantages, and more.
For example, it allows you to insert videos in your articles so that you can exploit live streaming when delivering some important news or following a live event. Videos are also great for spreading knowledge in an entertaining way, thanks to tutorial videos.
Moreover, on a digital magazine, you can host non-disruptive and interactive ads, and therefore earn money. They can even be interesting and useful, as they are related to the topics dealt with in the magazine (native ads) and they promote a product in a dynamic and catchy way.
Another advantage of going digital is the flexibility in subscription packages. The New York Times, one of the leading publications worldwide, has recently announced that its subscriptions revenue has grown with the help of separate subscription fees for their cooking and crossword digital publications. This attracted people that were only interested in these areas that would have only been subsections in a print publication.
Offer free content
So you already have a digital magazine. Now, you should introduce your magazine to new readers by providing free content. You can put up a website that’s regularly updated with daily or weekly blogs and news articles relevant to your magazine content.
Let’s say for example that your digital magazine caters to interior decorating. You can write regular blogs on interior decorating that will give visitors passing by a glimpse of the content you provide in your magazine. You can even put up an events calendar that lists all events that your audience might be interested in.
However, when doing this, you have to ensure that there is a clear gap in quality between your free website and paid digital magazine content. The latter needs to provide a deeper analysis of the topic.
Social networks are great promotional tools for brands. Companies big and small can raise their client base with a good social network campaign.
Firstly, you need to create your pages on your clients’ preferred social networks. Identify, based on the buyer personas, the best online places where you can get in touch with your audience, and start creating your online presence.
Thanks to social media, you can exploit word-of-mouth marketing, which allows you to spread your articles among your public with little effort - simply being interesting and relevant will be enough to get shares and likes. This is one of the best ways to raise your brand awareness and to obtain more subscriptions.
Another option is creating communities and groups online. But when doing this in an effort to get new readers, don’t name your group based on your magazine. Taking the example of your interior decorating magazine, name it something like “DIY Interior Decorating – Amateurs and Professionals 101”. This takes effort to cultivate, but can be very rewarding if done right.
And if you want to increase your readership drastically, then you can opt for a paid campaign. With this method you can target your campaign to the profiles that correspond with your buyer personas, without wasting money on expensive, generalised campaigns.
Similar to the social network campaigns, the ads you post on Google and other search engines can be highly customised according to your desired target.
How do they work? It’s quite simple: when potential clients research something on the web, if the keywords they write are relevant to your kind of magazine, then they will see an ad of your magazine website.
By clicking on the ad, they will be redirected to your site, and there they will see your offer and your product. By doing this, you can both increase your website views, attracting more advertisers, and increase your readership and your subscriptions.
If you want this method to work, you should, of course, have a digital magazine that people can read and become interested in. Therefore, when you ask yourself how to increase the readers of a magazine, remember that having a digital magazine will be an irreplaceable part of your strategy.
And don't forget to keep up to date with the world of the publishing industry, which you can learn more about in our downloadable content: